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MMORPG | Genre:Fantasy | Status:Final  (rel 04/24/07)  | Pub:Midway Games
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Lord of the Rings Online: Housing Overview

When Book 11 launched for Lord of the Rings Online, it added a number of new things into the game: A new raid zone, changes to a couple of the classes, new quests... but if you ask many players what it was they were looking forward to about the update, they probably would have said housing. Today, we present part one of a housing overview, starting with the basics and looking at Bree-land and The Shire.

With the launch of Lord of the Rings Online Book11, and the introduction of housing to the game, a feature that many have been asking for since the game’s launch back in April, I thought that it might be interesting to take a tour of the housing areas.

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There are four different areas available in the game, one for each race: Human, Hobbit, Dwarf and Elf. Fortunately, players aren’t restricted in their choice of housing by race as any character can purchase a house in any of the zones. This is how my first foray into the world of housing ended up with my Elven Champion, Stradden, browsing for real estate in Breeland, a Human settlement while my Hobbit Hunter browsed lazily in The Shire.

The housing in each zone is divided up into neighborhoods of 30 homes in total, divided between Kinship Houses (4), Deluxe Houses and Standard Houses. Each neighborhood in a zone is a copy of a shared instance, meaning that every neighborhood is identical to the others but takes a unique quality from the people who move in. At the time of my writing this, there are 36 different neighborhoods to choose from in Breeland with more certain to be on the way.

In order to enter the housing areas, you need only travel to the area. Assuming that you don’t already own a property, I thought it might be helpful to provide you with a map:

 

Simply journeying to the area will let you take a look around at the different plots and houses that are available. If you’re adventurous and have the money, you may want to purchase a house of your own. To do this, you have to find the appropriate Housing Broker, a vendor-style NPC located near the entrance to any given housing area:

Be warned ahead of time that housing isn’t a cheap endeavor for characters of lower levels (you have to be at least level 15 to buy a house in the first place). The least expensive standard house that I saw in this neighborhood was going for a buy price of 1 gold, with an upkeep cost of 50 silver (upkeep costs are on a per week basis). In the same neighborhood, 6 Chestnut Road, a Deluxe House is going for a purchase price of 7 gold, 700 silver with an upkeep of 165 silver and a Kinship House at 9 Chestnut Road is going for 16 gold, 500 silver with an upkeep cost of 330 silver. Something that you will notice right away is that prices vary even within housing categories, meaning that one Standard House may cost more or less than another Standard House. The reason for this becomes obvious as you tour through a neighborhood as, like in real life, some houses come with nicer properties or views than others.

At higher levels, this kind of expense isn’t really a problem, but lower level characters are going to have to really want to dedicate their resources to home ownership if they want a comfortable place for their character to hang their hat.

The image below is the view that you get when you first enter the neighborhood:

Below, please find an exterior look at some of the houses that are available. The first is a standard house, and, to provide some perspective, next to it you will find a picture of a kinship house:

I also had the opportunity to poke around a little bit inside of the kinship house, so I thought I'd post some pictures of that as well:

Finally, if you were curious about the layout of the Bree-land housing area neighborhoods, we have provided a map:

Next, I logged into my Hobbit character who, because she’s still lower in level, is still hanging around The Shire. You’ll find the Hobbit area settlement near the end of the road going south toward Southfarthing:

The Hobbit neighborhoods are quiet and quaint. Everything that I’d really come to expect from The Shire, where things just don’t seem as serious as they do in the rest of Turbine’s version of Middle-Earth (I played a game of “Hiders and Seekers” as a quest). Hobbit Holes abound in the rolling hills of these neighborhoods which to my mind were just a touch nicer than those in the Human lands.

Here's a look at the neighborhood, a vista, a standard house, a deluxe house and a kinship house:

For a peek inside, let's take a little look at the interior of the Deluxe house:

While in the neighborhood, I stumbled across the Homestead Provisions building. Here, I had access to a Vault Keeper, a Healer and perhaps most importantly, a Housing Furnisher. The Furnisher sells everything from paint for walls and floors, flooring, tables and the like for the inside of houses to trees, shrubs and wheelbarrows to decorate the property outside.

Below, find a map to the Homestead Provisions building (also serving as a map of the neighborhood), as well as a picture!:

Next time, we'll take a look at the Dwarf and Elf neighborhoods and go into more depth on owning and furnishing your home.

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